Just Say No to MySpace
I’ve been preparing to write a column about MySpace for while but it seems like there is no end to the controversy. I’ve always had a bad feeling about MySpace until recently tried to suppress it. I’m a parent, but my kids are too old for MySpace and they learned responsible online behavior at a very young age. I can’t help this nagging impression that MySpace is just a shopping mall for pedophiles. I must not be alone, searching Google on pedophiles and myspace returns 176,000 thousand hits.
Many of my friends have been detailing the relationship between MySpace and notorious spyware like Zango and Direct Revenue. (More Info from Chris Boyd). SpywareWarrior Suzi Turner at ZDNet reports that someone is actually reading our Blogs working to cover their tracks. ( More Info from Suzi).
Now it’s just getting worse. Yesterday Brain Krebs at the Washington Post reported that MySpace had allowed advertising from a client who embedded spyware into the ad using an image security flaw I first wrote about last December. The Zero-Day WMF Exploit information helped launch Bits from Bill into the Blogshere. Anyone who might still be running an unpatched machine would have been inflected just by going to MySpace and getting this ad. They wouldn’t even have to click on the ad!
Last month I actually wrote to MySpace about advertising WinPatrol but never heard back. I figured the MySpace user base would be folks who really needed WinPatrol. Apparently, I was correct.
Just as I was completing today’s rant I received an additional link from my buddy Wayne Porter to the “Be Smart, Be Safe” blog which checked out a new “bonus” free feature on MySpace. The “bonus” include Smiley Central, Cursor Mania, Popular Screensavers, the infamous MyWebSearch toolbar, and Search Assistant. All the above are candidates for inclusion at http://www.stopbadware.org/.